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Gynecologic Cancer

Gynecologic cancer refers to a group of cancers that begin in one of the organs of the female reproductive system, including the cervix, fallopian tubes, ovaries, peritoneum, uterus, vagina or vulva. Of these, uterine cancer is the most common in women in the US, occurring in approximately 65,000 US women per year.

Prevention and Routine Screening

Some gynecologic cancers—including cervical, vaginal and vulvar cancers—are caused by certain types of human papillomavirus (HPV). Preventative measures for HPV include limiting exposure to the virus, which is passed from one individual to another during skin-to-skin contact with an infected area of the body, and receiving a vaccine that protects against certain HPV infections that cause precancer and cancer. In addition, cervical cancer may be prevented by having a routine screening test, called a Pap smear (or Pap test), which detects abnormal cells in the cervix.

In the News

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  • UMMS researchers forging new understanding of BRCA cancer gene function with NCI grant
    Research News

    UMMS researchers forging new understanding of BRCA cancer gene function with NCI grant

    A UMass Medical School research team has been awarded a National Cancer Institute grant to advance understanding of how hereditary breast and ovarian cancer genes work, and why tumors lacking these genes are sensitive to chemotherapy.

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